Boeing has submitted a proposal offering its A160T Hummingbird
for the US Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory's Immediate Cargo
Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) Demonstration Program.
"The Marines have identified an urgent need for unmanned aerial
vehicles to deliver supplies in lieu of putting trucks and
personnel on dangerous roads," said John Groenenboom, A160T program
manager for Boeing. "The A160T was designed from inception as a UAS
with significant payload-carrying and high-altitude-operation
capabilities, so we are confident in its ability to meet the
requirements of this critical mission."
The demonstration contract is expected to be awarded in July.
Boeing will demonstrate it can deliver 2,500 pounds of cargo per
day from one simulated forward-operating base to another in fewer
than six hours per day for three consecutive days. The
demonstration program could lead to future business
The A160T has a 2,500-pound payload capacity. It features a
unique optimum-speed-rotor technology that significantly improves
overall performance efficiency by adjusting the rotor’s speed
at different altitudes, gross weights and cruise speeds. The
autonomous unmanned aircraft, measuring 35 feet long with a 36-foot
rotor diameter, has hovered at 20,000 feet and has cruised at more
than 140 knots. The A160T established a world endurance record in
its class in 2008 with an 18.7-hour unrefueled flight.